Studio: Brains Base
Genre: Shounen Romantic Comedy
Ratings (of 5)
OP/ED Themes: ♥♥♥½
If you've followed my First Dates before, you're already aware that it takes something pretty special to make me interested in a shounen-oriented rom-com or moe drama-- their female characters tend to be so pandering that I can't get into it. Akikan! is probably not going to be an exception.
The basic story is that Daichi Kakeru, an oblivious, perverted, virgin idiot (could he be some kind of great-grandson to Urusei Yatsura's Ataru Moroboshi?), collects rare soda cans. One day he buys a (non-rare) melon soda, all the while telling the soda machine that it's a slut (...no, seriously). He takes the soda home and opens it up to drink, but as soon as he puts his lips to it, it turns into a girl.
The girl, who he eventually names Melon, can turn back into a can with a tug on her soda-tab-shaped earring, requires that the soda itself not be drunk (although if you refill the can with the same kind of soda she'll be fine), and also requires occasional carbon dioxide infusions to keep from going flat (not in the chest, which would have been much more clever).
The show is being presented as sort of a way-over-the-top comedy, with a couple of mysterious villains-- one of whom apparently favors molesting teenage boys, ahem –and a small series of wacky side characters. All of the characters are extremely over-the-top representations of common anime archetypes: the childhood friend, Najimi, who has a crush on the lead character; the nearly-invisible (...sometimes literally) male friend Gigolo; the bad-ass female who beats up the main character, Yurika...the main character himself, of course (see above), and our heroine Melon, who is a tsundere of the Naru Narusegawa type (not a loli, likes to beat up the lead, etc).
All in all, I'd give this series a pretty overwhelming “mediocre.” The animation is decent but not great; same with the designs, the characters, the script...only the story, with its weird soda-cans-becoming-girls premise, is anything different so far. The voice acting is solid, although Sayaka Narita (as Melon) sounds an awful lot like she took Tsundere 101 with Rie Kugimiya-- which may be a draw for some. The OP and ED were pretty catchy.
Because I see a bit of potential for the over-the-top parody, and because the premise is still slightly off-beat, I may give this one another shot, but I have to admit, I'm not expecting much. That said, if you really like moe romantic comedies along the lines of Clannad or Toradora!, you may find this to be a light, fun poor man's version.